Culture is one of the four pillars of the DevOps CAMS model. Culture in a DevOps context is about breaking down barriers not only between development and operations, but also between all kinds of teams and between teams of the same type. The goal is a safe environment that encourages innovation and creativity. An environment that encourages smart failure and that understands what motivates skilled information workers: Autonomy, mastery and purpose. The motto should be: Think it, build it, run it, or just: You build it, you run it.
The Accelerate book uses sociologist Ron Westrum’s typology of organizational culture in their surveys, and found that in 2016:
- 31% of us work in an organization with a pathological culture:
- Large amounts of fear and threat.
- People hard, withold and distort information for political resons.
- 48% of us work in an organization with a bureacratic culture:
- Protect your department and make your own rules.
- Do things by the book (your book). This is more important than achieving the mission.
- 21% of us work in an organization with a generative culture:
- A focus on the mission: How do we reach our goal?
- Good information flow, better collaboration, high level of trust, less hierarchy.
For DevOps, we should strive for a generative culture.